Once the clouds cleared and the fields dried, the Festus varsity baseball team has found its stride. The Tigers have won two games this week, extending their winning streak to five. Festus defeated Lafayette on the road Monday, 9-7. Then Tuesday, the Tigers downed conference foe DeSoto, 10-3 at West City Park.
Monday, Festus used a big five run fifth inning to break a 3-3 tie and take control of the game against Lafayette. Despite giving up four runs in the bottom of the seventh, the Tigers held on for the 9-7 win.
Four Tigers had multiple hit games, led by Jake Leitner‘s (12) three-for-four day. He scored two runs and drove in two. Collin Mann (12) had two hits and three RBI. He blasted a home run. Eddie Martin (11) and Brennan Pryor (12) also had two hits for Festus.
Cody Peters (12) was the winning pitcher, going five plus innings, giving up four runs and striking out four. He got relief help from Zach Liles (11) and Caleb Hyde (11), with Hyde picking up a save.
“Cody Peters did a great job,” said head coach Jeff Montgomery. “He was the key. He was fearless and held down a really good team. Offensively, we looked good with our approaches.”
That carried over into Tuesday’s game against DeSoto. The Tigers took no prisoners, scoring eight runs in the first two innings. The offensive onslaught was impressive, with all ten players in the lineup hitting safely at least one time. Festus banged out 14 hits, and did not have one batter strike out.
Chase Cole (12) led the Tigers with three hits. Charlie Pratt (11) and Hyde both had two hits. Pratt had a triple, and Matt Rosen (12) drove in two runs.
Leitner pitched three innings and got the win. Blake Holland (12) had an impressive relief outing, hurling four shut out innings. He allowed three hits and struck out three.
“We were able to put runners in motion a couple times, and we are hitting the ball on a line or on the ground much better,” commented Montgomery. “Our pitchers are changing speeds better. Holland looked really good on the mound. We are bouncing back when we give up runs and responding. T hat is a good sign of a team that has some fight and perseverance about them.”
The Tigers hope to keep things going as they take on conference rival, Perryville, Thursday on the Pirates’ home field. First pitch is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. Festus will return home to close the week on Friday, taking on Mehlville at West City Park for a 4:30 p.m. start.